The 100th anniversary of Venice is coming up Monday, July 4th. The Venice Centennial Committee had its parade and opening day ceremony Sunday, June 26th, and now events specific to various aspects of Venice culture and history are planned throughout the summer, including events pertaining to bodybuilding, peace politics, art and surfing/skateboarding. This weekend, which concludes with the date of the actual Centennial, is especially flooded with celebrations of Venice’s 100th.

RAFFLE/ABBOT AWARDS — A raffle and awards ceremony to inaugurate the Venice Community Trust, an arts initiative that intends to create a historical record of art in Venice without relying on the artists themselves to put up the money to do it, is planned for 7 p.m. Thursday, June 30th, at eQuator Books, 1103 Abbot Kinney Blvd., Venice. Admission is free.

The trust is sponsored by the Venice Chamber of Commerce and will document crafts, literature, music, film, performance, theater and visual arts for distribution to educational institutions citywide. Financing of the trust will be sought through corporations and collectors rather than the artists themselves.

Abbot Awards, originally awarded by the Other Venice Film Festival to honor “maverick filmmakers,” will be awarded at this ceremony to famous Venetians in the arts including Orson Bean, Ed Ruscha and the late Gregory Hines in memoriam. The awards will be presented by filmmaker and early Dogtown skateboarder Stacy Peralta.

A cash prize will be awarded to the winner of a raffle from which proceeds will go to the Venice Community Trust.

Information, (310) 822-0024.

VENICE ARTISTS ABOUT VENICE — The Venice People’s Centennial Celebration, a series of alternative events with a focus on “personal statements” about Venice from artists living in Venice, begins with an art show and reception. Venice Artists About Venice, curated by Emily Winters, will feature images and experiences concerning Venice. The exhibit is on display from Tuesday, July 5th, until Friday, July 29th, at SPARC (Social and Public Art Resource Center), 685 Venice Blvd., Venice. An opening reception is scheduled for 6 to 9 p.m. Saturday, July 9th. Admission is free.

The Venice People’s Centennial features “Divas of Venice” special events in August and a showing of “The Posters of Peace Press,” political posters created and printed by Venice artists and activists in September. People’s Centennial events have been organized by the Venice Arts Council and SPARC.

Information, (310) 822-9560 ext. 10.

VENICE HISTORY — Two Venice history events are planned back-to-back at Beyond Baroque.

First, a look at Venice film, poetry and history will feature presentations by John O’Kane (editor of left-wing political magazine A-Mass); Gerry Fialka (media ecologist, film historian and Marshall McLuhan scholar); and Philomene Long Thomas (poet and wife of the late Venice Beat generation poet John Thomas) at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, July 2nd, at Beyond Baroque, 681 Venice Blvd., Venice. Admission is free.

Information, (310) 822-3006.

The next day, “This Was Venice,” an archival showing and historic slide show presented by the Venice Historical Society, is planned for 2 p.m. Sunday, July 3rd. Admission is free.

Information, (310) 822-3006.

VENICE ‘ROGUE’ ART — Rogue Wave ’05, an exhibit of works by 19 artists that set out to capture the “spirit and vitality” of new art currently being made in Los Angeles, opens with a reception at 6 p.m. Thursday, June 30th, at LA Louver Gallery, 45 Venice Blvd., Venice. Admission is free.

Information, (310) 822-4955.

ROSENDAHL ON VENICE BEACH — Recently-elected 11th district Los Angeles City Councilman Bill Rosendahl will honor the Venice Centennial at his swearing-in ceremony from 10 a.m. to noon Saturday, July 2nd, on the Venice Beach boardwalk, (ocean end of Windward Avenue), Venice.

Information, (310) 398-4890.

RETURN OF VENICE TIGERS — A picnic and lighthearted exhibition softball game featuring a revival of the Venice Tigers (featuring members of Fire Station #63), a minor league baseball team that played in Venice from 1913 to 1915, before moving to Vernon, will take place from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday, July 4th, at Penmar Park, 1341 Lake St., Venice. The Tigers will take on mythic rivals the Venice Menace, a team of “dastardly dark-mustachioed ballplayers.” Boos are welcome, organizers say. There will also be musical entertainment, children’s activities and catered food. Admission is free.

MUSCLE BEACH CONTEST — A centennial Mr. and Ms. Muscle Beach Venice physique and figure contest will be held from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday, July 4th, at the Venice Beach Recreation Center, 1800 Ocean Front Walk, Venice. Spectator admission is free. Muscle Beach Hall of Fame Awards will be presented to Bill Howard, John Balik and Paula Bolson.

Information, (310) 399-2775.

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